- Vivian Walker is working towards making black Father Christmas a norm with her 1,900-member Facebook group
- The time she saw a black Santa was in a photo in her brother's daycare, an encounter that made her want to see one in flesh
- In 2012 when Vivian had a baby, she achieved the dream with her child despite the fact that she had to drive a long distance for it
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Santa Claus always projects the white colour, no wonder their masks are made of white furs. The reverse is the case in some parts of the US where people are changing the narrative for their Christmas celebration.
CNN reports that Vivian Walker, aged 48, took it upon herself to make sure people see Father Christmas of colour.
The first time she saw a picture of a black Santa, it was at her little sibling’s daycare. Ever since then, she had always wished she met one.
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In 2012, Vivian had a baby and then she began wishing her boy would get a chance to see a black Santa. The first one her child saw, she had to drive eight hours from Cleveland to Detroit.
Of the experience, she said: "Oh my God, it felt empowering. We both got to see it at the same time. It was unbelievable.”
To make her dream a persistent one, Vivian opened a Facebook group called Black Santa Directory, in 2016 so that its 1,900 members can alert each other of any event where black Santa is being featured.
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Vivan, middle school counsellor, organizes the group with Dr Jihan Woods, a psychiatrist, who created a Find Black Santa app in 2018.
Others have also had their black Santa experiences. Barbara Mullen had hers when she was 8 as she saw her father dressed the part to share gifts to children in San Francisco.
Another person, Melvin Rhoden Jr, a 44-year-old manager, dressed as a Santa at a fundraising campaign in Arizona for a local boys’ empowerment organization.
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In her search, Vivian said finding public events with black Santa has been hard, but that they are gradually making progress, especially with this year’s efforts.
In encouraging families to patronize black Santa, she said “Black Santa is Santa”.
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